Proposition 8: Man + Woman = Marriage?

I was on Twitter today, and someone tweeted this link to a Keith Olbermann piece on gay marriage.

I retweeted (forwarded it on, to all you non-twits) it, because I agreed with him and felt it was well-put.

Then I got this response from Deanna in Ridgeland, MS (here’s a link to her blog).

At first, I tried to put it out of my mind. I didn’t want to get bogged down in a Twitter “argument.” There are always people who are going to disagree with you, and chances are, nothing you say will change anyone’s mind, especially if they’re opinionated enough to reply.

But my mind wasn’t ready to let it go so easily.

Man + Woman = Marriage

If I were to reply, I couldn’t say I disagreed with her. I’m a woman, married to a man. That’s what I’m doing, so I agree.

But that’s not where it ends for me.

I understand that many people feel that there’s a moral component. I absolutely respect that. But I guess where I’m coming from is Jesus’ Golden Rule:

“So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.”

-Matthew 7:12 Quest Study Bible NIV

Would I want to live in a society that did not allow me to marry? Not so much. So I don’t feel that I should condemn those who are affected by Proposition 8. Furthermore, I read this passage as well:

“Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.”

-Luke 6:37 Quest Study Bible NIV

In my Bible, there are study questions on selected topics. Here are a couple of points that stood out for me (the bolding is mine):

“What’s wrong with standing up for our rights?  …Christians with convictions about right and wrong will not idly stand by, blind to injustices against others….Though believers may disagree about the best response, they agree some response against injustice is necessary.”

-Quest Study Bible NIV page 1482

“Did Jesus forbid us from judging others? …We all have planks in our eyes, so to speak; to judge people for the little specks stuck in their eyes while we have planks in our own is arrogance and folly. Those with planks in their eyes can’t see clearly. They are dangerously low in discernment. Since we all have this distorted perspective, we need to either be very humble or else leave judging to God. We have a moral responsibility to judge the behavior of others-but only if we are humbly aware that we will sometimes be dead wrong and never totally right. We must remember that our ability to judge is limited and that we are sinful people who will ourselves be judged one day.”

-Quest Study Bible NIV page 1394

So essentially, I put myself in the place of the homosexuals who want the right to marry. How would I feel, were I in their shoes? I wouldn’t want to be discriminated against, so I cannot support discrimination against them. In my own small way, I hope I am not “idly standing by, blind to injustices” against America’s (and specifically, California’s) gay Americans. In the same way, barriers have been broken against women, immigrants, African-Americans and other people of color or creed. How is it that it’s still okay to discriminate against homosexuals in 2008??

At the same time, I’m trying to refrain from judging all those involved in the controversy. I cannot presume to judge those who are oppressing homosexuals in long-term, committed relationships any more than I can presume to judge the homosexuals themselves. For sure, somewhere in this mess, I am “dead wrong and never totally right.”

Anyone who knows me will tell you that I am definitely non-confrontational, and I’m not looking to start a flame war. I know that this controversy is both political and religious in nature. That said, I do respect the views of those who disagree with me, as long as the discourse is kept respectful. As it’s been said here in America, “I may not agree with what you say, bit I’ll defend to the death your right to say it.”

As for me, I’m trying to err on the side of freedom, and for me that means no on Proposition 8.

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About Kathleen

Kathleen Heuer is a serial arts advocate and volunteer. She is the mom of two beautiful girls, wife to a brilliant nuclear engineer, and referee between her golden retriever and her hissy 18-year-old cat. For more, go to http://about.me/kathleendheuer.
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12 Responses to Proposition 8: Man + Woman = Marriage?

  1. Russ says:

    Let’s take your reasoning a step further. If it is wrong to stop homosexuals from marriage, then is also wrong to prohibit the girl next door from making a living through prostitution? After all, she is only trying to pay her bills. Who am I to tell her that she is wrong? And what about my neighbor across the street? Is it my place to tell him that he should not invite the children in the neighborhood to watch gay movies with him? And what about the guy across town who practices beastyality? Should I just accept that people will do what people do? Where does it stop?

  2. Sandwiched says:

    As for prostitution, if it’s a fair transaction (no one’s being exploited as in a hooker-pimp relationship) between two (or more…who cares?) respectful (not engaging in activity where my kids can see them) consenting adults, fine. As for neighborhood children and beasts, they are not consenting adults, IMHO, and cannot make informed choices in those particular matters and therefore, deserve the protection of law.

    Aren’t you glad you asked?

    I did SO not want to get into all this. My point was just that we’re all God’s children and deserve to be treated as such.

  3. alexad says:

    Many people seem to think marriage was something invented by their deity, when it wasn’t. Marriage was a secular concept and around LONG, LONG before any religion codified it in their dogma. So, religion actually co-opted the concept of marriage to begin with, not the other way around.

  4. Russ says:

    I agree that we are all God’s children and that is exactly why we all need to strive for holiness, not immorality.

    …as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.” [1 Pet 1:14-16]

  5. Regan says:

    Seriously, Russ. I don’t want my kids watching hetero sex films, either. If my neighbors invited my kids in for gay OR hetero sex films, I’d call the cops. Beastiality (yes, that’s how it’s spelled) is also illegal. Prostitution is legal in NV for the very reasons Sandwiched mentioned above.

    Try to lose the hatred for others and maybe you’ll be free to love yourself more.

  6. Russ says:

    Regan,

    I don’t believe that I have been hateful to anyone on this blog but I am honestly open to correction if I have been. I am honestly curious, which of my statements did you find as hateful?

  7. Duane says:

    Hey Russ. I think Peter meant for us to use that reference on ourselves, not as a standard for others. Jesus told Nicodemus, “For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world should be saved through Him.” Jn 3:17. Also, I don’t believe Christ meant His church to be a tool of condemnation. Look at the example set by the Acts 2 church, “and they began selling their property and possessions, and were sharing them with all, as anyone might have need….praising God AND HAVING FAVOR WITH ALL PEOPLE. And the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved. The Acts 2 church was not condemning Jerusalem for killing their savior, for being self-righteous hypocrites, etc., etc. They changed their world by acts of love and kindness. Maybe we try doing the same. Maybe we should pray for the gay community rather than condemn. Maybe we should reach out to gay people we run into with love. That’s probably what Jesus would have us do as pointed out in his example when the pharisees drug an adulterous woman through the street and threw her in front of Jesus and demanded He order her to be stoned as the law of Moses commands. Jesus concurred but only after adding, “but let him who is without sin cast the first stone.” After the pharisees left, Jesus asked the woman, “Is there no one left to condemn you?” She answered, “No one my Lord.” Then our awesome, winsome, perfect Lord, the only one who was qualified to throw a stone said, “Then neither do I condemn you.” Do you think that woman made a decision at that moment to become a follower of Christ? So then, is the best way for us to make followers of Christ to condemn them or to reach out in love and try to earn their favor? Peace to all.

  8. Seadolphyn says:

    *sigh* is all I can say! I’m am a heterosexual woman, completely opposed to Prop 8. Regan and Sandwiched couldn’t have stated my sentiments better. Thank you for putting forward such a well-thoughtout blog on the matter.

  9. Beq says:

    What a fabulous post! I’m in agreement with Sandwiched and Duane in our need to remove ourselves from our natural tendency to pass judgment. We are all in the same boat here – Romans 3:23 tells us “for ALL have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (NIV). I can’t imagine my sins of pride, greed, judgment, etc. legally keeping me from being joined with the one I love in marriage. What if pre-marital sex (a sin) prohibited heterosexuals from marriage?

    I’m a Christian who is learning every day, taking tiny steps towards being more Christ-like. That said, I’m clear that many believers understand marriage is only between man and woman. It started in Genesis when our Lord indicates that Adam requires a ‘suitable helper’ in Genesis 2:20. It was our Lord’s specific intention to create a female creature for the first man. I could interpret the Lord intended for man + woman = marriage. What I can’t agree with is legally prohibiting two people from being together if they feel they’ve found the best ‘suitable helper’. I believe that we should have the right for homosexuals to be legally bound in marriage. I will leave judgment to our Savior Jesus on Judgment Day. I have way too many sins to cast the first stone.

  10. Russ says:

    Duane,

    I agree that we as the church are not to judge the world or condemn the world but we are to love the world. But loving the world does not mean that we do not speak the truth in love.

    For example you said, “The Acts 2 church was not condemning Jerusalem for killing their savior, for being self-righteous hypocrites, etc., etc. They changed their world by acts of love and kindness.”

    But this in not completely true. The Acts church, when they were filled with the Holy Spirit on Pentecost preached to the people in Jerusalem, “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you by miracles, wonders, and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know– Him, being delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death;”

    Peter told them the truth. What was the truth? “…you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death.” And what was the response of the people? “Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Men and brethren, what shall we do?””

    It is not enough to simply have love without truth. Our love must be in truth. Truth without love is a clanging cymbal but love without truth is meaningless.

    What is the truth concerning homosexuality? The truth is that it is sin just like lying is sin and fornication is sin. So when you are telling me to vote no on prop 8, you are saying that I should promote sin. How can I preach on Sunday that sin, any sin, is wrong and then vote to promote it on Tuesday?

    You are correct. The church must be known for our love. They will know that we are Christians by our love. By the love in the church is not without truth. It is not the love of the sixties that included free sex and drugs to all. It is a holy love and a church filled with holy love must also be willing to speak the truth in love to a lost and dying world that desperately needs the forgiveness of God.

    When I say to the wicked, ‘You shall surely die,’ and you give him no warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life, that same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at your hand. [Eze 3:18]

    We must speak the truth both in the church and the voting booth. If we say one thing in the church but act exactly the opposite outside the church, do we really believe what we say we believe?

  11. I’m really impressed with the way you presented your opinion and I am glad to know that at least one clear voice is being heard among the screaming match this has become. Thank you for this post and putting yourself out there.

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